Category Archives: EDTC300

just keep swimming / solo sigue nadando

As I continue my learning project journey, I am reminded of a line by a famous animated fish.

“Just keep swimming,” stated by Dory in the movie Finding Nemo.

This phrase reminds me to not give up and to keep pushing through, even if I am finding the task to be difficult.

Photo Credit: A. Elizabeth Flickr via Compfight cc

Leaning a language is in fact just that, a difficult task. Over the past few days, I have struggled to keep on top of my daily Duolingo Spanish lessons and I have not used the Tinycards app in over a week.

As I reflect on why I have been neglecting my practice, I feel the more I learn, the more challenging it becomes. In the beginning, it was easy since what I was learning was just the basics. Now that I have moved past that, I am having to combine various parts of the language together. This requires me to retrieve information from my memory and apply it in new and different ways. It can be quite discouraging when you don’t get the answers to the lesson questions correct right away.

That being said, I do know that the only way to learn and retain something new is through practice!

Like my boyfriend, Jose Miguel always says, “práctica, práctica, práctica” and to submerge myself in as much of the language as I can. If he can become fluent in English as an adult, I can surely learn and maintain some basic Spanish.

Moving forward, I am going to hold myself accountable by ensuring that I am practicing daily. I can do this by maintaining a ‘streak’ on my Duolingo account.  Wish me luck!

      

Question:

How are you keeping yourself accountable during your EDTC300 learning project?

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Screencastify: screen recorder for Chrome

For this post, I was to find an app or tool that I was unfamiliar with and give it a try (emphasis on the word an, meaning ONE)…… Well, it was quite a challenge for me to chose just one and go with it, as there are so many apps and tools I wanted to check out. My indecisiveness to pick just ONE lead me to delay this post. It was not until I used Screencastify to create a screen recording video of Duolingo for my learning project blog post, ‘better late than never/mejor trade que nunca’, that I was able to narrow my choice to this particular tool. 

Screencastify

It is a Google Chrome Extension that allows you to capture and record your screen activity with just a click of a button. It gives you the option to record your desktop, browser tab, or webcam capture and to narrate with your microphone’s audio. After recording your screencast, it will automatically save to Google Drive and with a few clicks, you can publish it directly to YouTube and share it.

I was truly amazed at how simple Screencastify was to use! Having never created a video with my computer before and not even really knowing that I could record my screen, this tool was very user-friendly and easy to navigate. I did not even have to watch their overview YouTube video in order to figure out how to use it but I have posted it here so you can see first hand how it works.

 

 

The major downfall of this tool is that if you want full access to its features, it is going to cost you $24.00 USD per year. They do however have different pricing options available for schools that range from 16% off – 50% off – ‘let’s talk’.

As for classroom usability, Screencastify’s website has for school tab that provides a ton of suggestions for educational application and a collection of ideas from educators around the world. One link I found particularly useful was 7 Super Screencasting Activities for School by Eric Curts as it includes tutorial videos for each suggested classroom activity.

It teams of the SARM Model, this Google Chrome Extension would fall under modification, “tech allows for significant task redesign”. With using Screencastify you are redesigning how you can give a presentation/tutorial, how you give feedback, and how you can communicate with others.

better late than never / mejor trade que nunca

¿Cómo estás?

As I began the second week of my learning project, I was eager to continue learning Spanish and to practice it out on my boyfriend and his daughters. My boyfriend’s daughters are Gaia, who is nine years old and Ever, who is six years old. The girls have grown up with their Dad almost solely speaking to them in Spanish, so their comprehension of the language is very good. They also know exactly what correct and incorrect pronunciation sounds like. The youngest, Ever, is the first to inform me if I am not saying a word in Spanish properly. She is a great little ‘teacher’.

This week on our way to school one morning, I decided to surprise the girls with my new learned Spanish and to show off how much better my pronunciation has become. I said the following greetings, phrases, and common nouns to them; all from memory, I might add. 

  • Hola – Hello
  • Buenos Dias – Good Morning
  • Buenas Tardes – Good Afternoon
  • Buenas Noches – Good Night
  • Como Estas? – How are you?
  • Por favor – Please
  • Gracias – Thank You
  • De nada – You’re Welcome
  • el nino – girl
  • la nina – boy
  • el hombre – man
  • la mujer – women/lady

Both Gaia and Ever were impressed by the number of words I had memorized and with how much my pronunciation had improved.

The Doulingo App is the main resource I have been using to learn Spanish. Having the app on my phone has made learning and practicing very easy and accessible. Any time I have a free moment in my day and/or before bed, I can open the application and work my way through a lesson or two. Each lesson focuses on a particular area of the language and within each lesson, there are a number of mini-lessons. These mini-lessons short and simple, but still ask enough questions so that retention can occur.

This is a video of me making my way through a mini-lesson under Phrases Level 3, to show how quick and easy using Duolingo is to learn and practice a new language. I created this video using Screencastify, a Google Chrome Extension that was introduced to us in our EDTC 300 course. I was really delighted with how simple it was to create and upload this video!

Another resource I find myself using quite frequently during this learning project is the Google Translate App. This application allows me to look up any word, phrase, or sentence in my native language, English, and have it instantly translated into the language of my choice, ie. Spanish. I use this for words I have not yet learned via Duoligio and/or my boyfriend.

Adiós Por Ahora

Twitter: ‘tweet-tweedilly-tweet’

Thinking of Twitter and tweeting automatically makes my brain start singing the song Rockin’ Robin by Bobby Day, specifically the lyrics ‘tweet-tweedilly-tweet’!

Now that I got that out of the way, here is what my current relationship with Twitter is like and what I think about it as a professional development tool.

Photo Credit: Anthony Quintano Flickr via Compfight cc

Twitter and I

Twitter and I have really only started our relationship recently. I have a personal Twitter account that I created in 2011 but I had not accessed or used it in years. Since having a professional Twitter account is a requirement of my EDTC 300 course, I have now become an active participant in regards to this social media platform. Give me a follow @MissKohuch.

I have now learned how to effectively utilize Twitter as a tool to broaden my Professional/Personal Learning Network. Through my EDTC 300 class, I have been educated about what Twitter has to offer, what its different functions do and how to use them. Some of these functions are; tweeting, following others, commenting on tweets, re-tweeting, liking tweets, using hashtags (#), linking material from other sites, etc.

Twitter Beginner? Not sure how it works? Check out this awesome resource by David Truss – Twitter EUD: Your One-Stop-All-You-Need-To-Know-Guide to Twitter

Now that I am armed with all of this Twitter knowledge, I have started to become a more frequent participant. This past week, along with my EDTC 300 professor and classmates, I took part in my very first EdChat, #saskedchat. Participating in it was a great way to drive into the world of Twitter and get to hear from others in the education profession. This particular #saskedchat was lead by my classmate Raegyn Fulmek and fellow Education student, Erin Zinger and it was about the paperless classroom, a topic that I had not truly given much thought to before. An additional tool we were introduced to was TweetDeck, which made following and keeping up with the #saskedchat mush easier. Overall, the EdChat was a great professional development experience and I look forward to participating in more in the near future!

A screenshot of my TweetDeck with a column for the hashtag #saskedchat and a column for one of the chat’s moderators, @raegynfulmek.

A Professional Development Tool

  • connecting with others and expanding one’s PLN (Professional Learning Network)
    • members of the local, national and international education community
  • access to resources by following others via @________
    • other university students, educators, schools, school divisions, education platforms, news & media organizations, blogs, websites, apps, etc.
  • hashtags to access specific content and narrow field of search
    • #edtech, #education, #edtc300, etc.
  • participation in Twitter Chats
    • ability to have live discussions and answer questions with other tweeters  about similar topics of interest
      • EdChats
I will end with this great resource about using Twitter effectively in education, by our very own University of Regina Education Professor, Dr. Alec Couros.

step two / segundo paso

buenas tardes

It has been a week since I began my EDTC 300 learning project and like my fellow blogger and classmate Miss Savannah stated in her blog post Spanish Update: Week One, learning a language online is a little overwhelming.

There are a lot of resources out there and within those resources, there are many options. For example, I began searching for a podcast that I could listen on my commute to and from work, but there were so  many to choose from. It took a bit of trial and error to find a podcast that would be good for me to start with. I settled on Learning Spanish for Beginners Podcast via iTunes as the each episode is specific and to the point. 

 

Next, I did some exploring on YouTube to see what learning videos were available to target some specifics areas of the language. Again, there were many to choose from and I ended up starting with some videos that are aimed at children. One in particular I used this past week was, Spanish for Kids / Learn Spanish by Learning Time Fun, these videos were a good starting point and easy to follow along with.

I also began using the app Duolingo on my phone to learn and practice the language. Over the week I completed 2 Intro & Phrases levels and 1 Travel, Restaurant & Family level. This app is a great resource and allows me to focus on specific areas of the Spanish language. In order to learn the language, Duolingo uses multiple ways of teaching; images, matching, sentence translation (English< >Spanish), fill in the blank, audio, and speech recording.  This app also makes the learner do over and re-practice the questions/learning that you get incorrect.

Follow them on Twitter @duolingo

My other fellow classmate and blogger Shaelyn Knudson is also learning Spanish for her EDTC 300 learning project. In her blog post Spanish, Week One, she created a fantastic voice-over video outlining the features of Duolingo and how to navigate through the lessons.

A second app I began using, as it was recommended/advertised through the Duolingo app, was Tinycards. Tinycards is a free flash card app that helps you learn and memorize topics via bite-size lessons. This app is another great tool and allows me to continue to practice and memorize the Spanish language.

Follow them on Twitter @tinycardsapp

Going forward I will continue to use the above resources, as well I will practice my NEW learned Spanish on my boyfriend. (That will be a true test of my skills as he is very honest when it come to my pronunciation). I will also listen to Spanish music and try watching a TV show is Spanish with Spanish subtitles!

adios por ahora

Feedly: RSS reader a.k.a. news aggregator

The world wide web is busting at the seams with information for us to access on every topic our heart’s can imagine. Navigating through all of this information can be very daunting and at times overwhelming. Lucky there are tools to aid us in the task of sifting out the unwanted information and providing us with direct access to what we desire.

These tools are known as RSS readers, RSS feeds, new aggregators, etc. and their purpose is to streamline the way we search for content to read online.

Feedly.com is the RSS reader I have chosen to use in order to subscribe to various education and edtech related sources and blogs. I found content about these topics by searching Feedly’s publications and blogs. I used search words like; edtech, education, teaching, classroom, school, educator, etc. From those searches, I chose which sources and blos I wanted to follow based on the description provided and the number of followers the source had.  I have so far created two feeds on my Feedly account, edtech and education in order to group the news that will be made available to me.

One source in particular I chose to follow is Education Technology and Mobile Learning. This source is relevant because its posts are all about education technology, which is one of the main feeds I have created on my Feedly account. It is also relevant because this source posts are in fact just that, relevant! Their posts are about the current and popular tech tools and media resources that are available for educators and students. I found that their posts are well organized, clear and concise. The titles for each post tell you exactly what is contained within the post as well, which made looking for specific information or tech tools very easy. When I went directly to their web page, I was further impressed with how simple it was to navigate and how I was able to find content quickly and efficiently. I can’t wait to use many of the technology and media tools they recommend in my future classrooms!

 

in the beginning / al principio

¡Hola!

For my EDTC 300 learning project assignment, I have decided to learn Spanish.

Learning this language is very important to me because it is the first language of my boyfriend. My boyfriend, Jose Miguel and I have been together for almost four years and I have been fortunate that he is fluent in English. Over our time together he has taught me some basic words and phrases in Spanish, but I do not use them nor do I practice very often. My understanding of Spanish has increased a but more than my ability to speak the language by listening to him converse with others. But when him and I talk and text, we default to English.

20170930_235001698_iOS

This summer however, we are traveling to Spain and will be spending three weeks  with his family, all of whom speak Spanish. This will be the first time I will be meeting them in person and I would love to be able to communicate with them in their native language!

Baseline: 

  • a few greetings
  • the alphabet
  • counting from 1-20
  • some household objects/furniture
  • some food
  • a few verbs (to sit, to pass, to go, etc.)

Plan:

  • daily use of the language app Duolingo
  • YouTube videos to target specific goals (ie. colours)
  • download and listen to podcasts while in the car
  • Twitter to network and connect to others about learning a new language
  • my boyfriend as a face-to-face resource
  • weekly blogging about my progress

Adios until next post!

Ed Tech & Me

Well Hello Everyone!

I am Katie Kohuch, a current University of Regina BEAD student in the Pre K-5 Elementary Program. BEAD stands for Bachelor of Education After Degree, which means I am old (haha), wise (maybe) and already have an undergraduate degree. I obtained my first two degrees from the U of R right out of high school; Bachelor of Human Justice in 2008 and Bachelor of Arts – Psychology (Honours) in 2010.

After completed them, I was still not sure what I wanted to do for a “career”, so  I spent the next few years primarily working as an Early Childhood Educator. It was through this work experience that I realized I should have listened to my five year old self:

Q: What do you want to be when you grow up?

A: “I am want to be a teacher like my mom!”

The process of going back to University has been a bit challenging for me but I know I am in the right place and that being an educator is what I am meant to be.

In regards to my experiences with educational technology, I have some from a few of the ED courses I have taken thus far. In my ESST 310 class, I had to create and use a blog via WordPress.com. Other classes have exposed me to different tech and media recourses that I will be able to use as an educator in the classroom with my future students.

That being said, I would classify myself as a reluctant blogger/social media user. One of my character flaws is that I am a perfectionist, so I find it difficult to just let my thoughts and ideas follow without over analyzing and over editing them to death. Therefore, I typically use technology and media to gain information and to ‘lurk’. I rarely use it to post about myself. I am however very motivated by this course’s hands-on approach to learning about various technological tools and emerging social media platforms. I feel that the weekly tasks and assignments are going to give me the push and practice I need to be more comfortable with creating and expressing my digital identity.

If you would like to join me on my Ed Tech journey, please give me a follow on Twitter @misskohuch.